Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Just In Time for Supper

Roger is often away several days out of the week.  I don't always know what time he is coming in, but I do know he is almost always hungry.  If it has been a long day at school I am apt to stop at Fresh Market and pick up a roasted chicken or a piece of roasted salmon on the way home.  Throw a salad together, maybe steam a vegetable and we have a meal although not always completely homemade.  

Last week I was on spring break and I wanted to cook.  Roger was to return on Wednesday, but didn't know the time because of rain delays.  With the rain I was sort of feeling like a soup.  With the temperatures I started thinking about a cold soup.  After taking a few pictures of cookbooks for an earlier post I started browsing Lee Bailey's Soup Dinners and found an asparagus soup recipe that sounded perfect for my mood.  I could make it early and let it sit until we were ready to eat.  (I actually halved the recipe and made very few changes.)

The color was a lovely spring green and the texture luxuriously silky.  I chose to serve it at room temperature rather than chilled.  

Lee Bailey's Asparagus Soup
(changes made only where noted)
serves 6

1 1/2 pound fresh asparagus, washed and with tough ends removed
1/4 cup unsalted butter
(I halved the butter with olive oil)
1/2 cupped chopped onion
1 cup (about 4) washed and chopped leeks (white part only)
1 to 2 cloves garlic, chopped (my addition..I just can't cook without it)
1/2 cup chopped celery (I left this out...forgot to put it on my list)
1 small baking potato (about 1/2 pound) peeled and cubed
3 1/2 cups chicken stock
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
salt and white pepper to taste
1/2 cup half-and-half

Cut off asparagus tips and set stalks aside.  Melt butter in a deep skillet with a lid.  Add asparagus tips, onion, leeks, celery, garlic and potato.  Cover tightly and cook over the very lowest heat until vegetables are soft.  Twenty minutes or more.

Meanwhile, place stock in a large saucepan with the reserved asparagus stalks, cut into one inch pieces.  Bring to a boil and simmer.  covered tightly for about 30 minutes.  Discard stalks and set stock aside.

In a food processor (I used my emersion blender) puree' softened vegetables and add to the asparagus stock.  Season with lemon juice, salt, white pepper.

Allow to cool and refrigerate (I didn't refrigerate).

Stir in half-and-half and garnish with creme fraiche or whipped cream (I used freshly chopped parsley) before serving.

I served the soup with a heirloom tomato, cucumber and onion salad and pumpernickel toast points.
Fresh strawberries made the perfect dessert.

Bon Appétit


  1. Lee Bailey's cookbook is one that I don't have. How is that possible? The asparagus soup look absolutely delicious. Pour some in a thermos and come on up. We'll have a soup sampler supper.

    I add garlic to a number of dishes that don't call for
    it--it's a taste I love and it takes the worry out of being confronted by a possible vampire. Wooden stakes are so messy.


  2. That soup looks gorgeous! I have a love/hate relationship with chilled soups. I've never warmed to the idea of them (no pun intended!) but on the few occasions that I have tried them - usually in restaurants - they are absolutely delicious. I think that I will try this one and, similar to you, vary the temperature somewhat - great idea! Thanks so much for stopping by my blog, and for your lovely comment. I'm now going to take a thorough look threw yours - and from what I've seen so far, it's lovely - I especially love the look of Willie! This is my favourite thing about 'blogland' - discovering new people and seeing new places from such a personal perspective - magical!

  3. Sorry _ I meant 'through' yours - it's FAR too early in the UK! x

  4. I have been making quite a few soups this winter, many of which I get from other blogs. I love asparagus soup and, if available, order it in restaurants. However, I have never made it, but now I will using your recipe. I agree, practically everything needs a little garlic.

  5. Bonnie, I'm on my way:) Yes, I do everything possible to keep the vampires at bay. Hugs, Bonnie

  6. Mrs Sutton, Thank you! Willie is a special little boy. I hope you will try the soup and enjoy. Thanks for stopping by. I, too, have found so many wonderful sites through blogging. Thanks, Bonnie

  7. Arleen, This was my first time to make it and I was so pleased with the result. I was equally tasty a couple of days later. Thanks, Bonnie

  8. It's not quite asparagus season here. I can't wait!

  9. oh bonnie, i am drooling. i think i would prefer this hot, i love HOT soup....but who knows!!

    i love that you love to cook!!

    are you on pinterest?? you would love it!!

    ps bonnie, it's extremely difficult to complete the word verification, i have tried 2 times already!!

  10. I have soup on the mind too....and got over zealous yesterday by soaking three different kinds of I have to cook them! This soup looks devine....going to bookmark this recipe and try it out! Now I am off to cook tons of beans...what was I Friday night!

  11. Asparagus soup sounds delicious. Thanks for the recipe. Have a lovely weekend!

  12. Beth, I am not for sure asparagus is in season here either, however Whole Foods has had some wonderfully tender shoots. Thanks, Bonnie

  13. Oh, I love bean soups. I know it will be delicious tonight. Bonnie

  14. Heidi, Always good to hear from you. I hope you enjoy. it was very good a couple of days later as well. I hope you have a terrific weekend. Bonnie

  15. Bonnie, I love making soup. And you already know how much I love Lee Bailey. Though I don't have that cookbook. Your menu sounds perfect, I have really been into eating more vegetarian meals lately. I hope you have a wonderful weekend!
    xx Sunday

  16. Finally another Lee Bailey fan.

    Lovely recipe, I'll bookmark this one for a sunny day.

    xo Jane

  17. Sunday, It is most definitely the time of year for meals revolving around fresh vegetables. With the early spring we should soon have plenty available

  18. Jane, I've loved Lee Bailey for so many years. I hate he is no longer with us to share his talents. Bonnie

  19. Glory girl, I'm in love with that cute little orange birdhouse. I've got to show it to Farm Boy...I want one!

    The soup looks perfecticly delicious sweetie, just pass me a spoon and I'll be a happy camper!

    God bless ya and have yourself a magnificent day sweetie!!! :o)

  20. the soup looks and sounds fabulous! and you sound like you have a gift for whipping up great meals!!!
    I am your newest follower..pls follow back if you can.